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Inventive Spatial Billiards Concept Hits Quest App Lab With Hand Tracking

Inventive Spatial Billiards Concept Hits Quest App Lab With Hand Tracking

An inventive early concept for adapting the classic game of billiards to VR is now on Quest's App Lab today after just a few days of development.

We don't normally cover games this early in development, but Hayden Jackson's spatial adaptation of pool caught our eye. The app, called 3D Pool right now, exchanges the familiar cue used in games like ForeVR Pool for a slingshot mechanic with hand tracking, replacing gravity with zero-g and bounding it all inside of a rectangular box instead of a table.

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Jackson told us over direct message he "came up with the idea by first reflecting on the many forms of play that VR is reimagining. Then further to the success of the Wii in the late aughts, and finally to considering what simple verbs can be performed with hand tracking and how they may be featured in clear gameplay."

The developer is looking for up to two hundred alpha testers through App Lab to continue iterating on the idea in a feedback loop with players.

The design seems like it would likely port well to other headsets that rely on hand tracking as its default input system, including the Apple Vision Pro, and we asked Jackson about whether he was thinking about that when he made it.

"The legacy of Apple's design philosophy in general has impacted the computing industry so pervasively that I was anticipating the Vision Pro's input as likely to similarly be both simple and clear before the headset was even announced, and so have spent some significant focus on developing an understanding of how to design for the input method since hand tracking first became available for the Meta Quest line," Jackson wrote. "Still, I see both the precision and tactility of controller input as an equally important method for supporting the wide range of experiences possible in both VR and spatial computing at large."

We'll check in with Jackson and keep an eye on how this project develops. His latest build added controller tracking, passthrough support, and hotseat multiplayer.

Jackson said he's planning to price it around $1.99, though he said he might consider making it free.

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